The Good, the Bad and the Ugly
For three men the Civil War wasn't hell. It was practice.Plot:
While the Civil War rages between the Union and the Confederacy, three men – a quiet loner, a ruthless hit man and a Mexican bandit – comb the American Southwest in search of a strongbox containing $200,000 in stolen gold.
Cast & Crew
Lee Van Cleef
Costume & Make-Up
Fun Facts of Movie
According to Eli Wallach, when it came time to blow up the bridge, Sergio Leone asked the Spanish Army Captain in charge to trigger the fuse, as a sign of gratitude for the Army’s collaboration. They agreed to blow up the bridge when Leone gave the signal “Vai!” (Go!) over the walkie-talkie. Unfortunately, another crew member spoke on the same channel, saying the words “vai, vai!”, meaning “it’s okay, proceed” to a second crew member. The Captain heard this signal, thought it was for him, and blew up the bridge. Unfortunately, no cameras were running at the time. Leone was so upset that he fired the crewman, who promptly fled from the set in his car. The Captain was so sorry for what happened that he proposed to Leone that the Army would rebuild the bridge to blow it up again, with one condition: that the fired crewman be re-hired. Leone agreed, the crewman was forgiven, the bridge was rebuilt, and the scene was successfully shot.
The movie remains the highest rated movie on IMDb not to receive a single Oscar nomination.
Clint Eastwood wore the same poncho through all three “Man with No Name” movies without replacement or cleaning.
In the gun store, everything Tuco (Eli Wallach) does with the guns was unscripted. Wallach knew little about guns, so he was instructed to do whatever he wanted. Most of the Storekeeper’s (Enzo Petito‘s) bemused reactions throughout the scene are genuine. The scene where Tuco shoves the open or closed sign in his mouth was also Wallach’s idea.
In addition to the train scene, Tuco (Eli Wallach) cheated death in the first scene where Blondie (Clint Eastwood) shoots him down from a hanging. The gunshot scared the horse, which took off running at full speed for nearly a mile. Wallach’s hands were tied behind his back, and he had to hang on for dear life with his knees.
Tuco’s line “When you have to shoot, shoot, don’t talk!” was improvised by Eli Wallach, which apparently caused the whole crew to burst out laughing. Eli was a little perplexed because he thought that what he said was actually pretty sensible. That is, he didn’t mean it as a joke, but his delivery and the look on his face made it side-splittingly hilarious.
Ennio Morricone‘s iconic theme music was designed in places to mimic the sound of a howling coyote. Originally, Morricone did not want to use the trumpet but Leone insisted. Along with the electric and acoustic guitars, and the “tarzan yell”, the trumpet became the most distinctive part of the soundtrack.
Because writer and director Sergio Leone spoke barely any English and Eli Wallach (Tuco) spoke barely any Italian, the two communicated in French.
When Eli Wallach arrived in Madrid, Spain, all of the hotels were full. Clint Eastwood invited him to sleep over at a friend’s house, and they shared the same bed. Wallach’s wife Anne Jackson told him he could boast that he was the only man to sleep with Clint Eastwood.
Although Clint Eastwood was top-billed in this movie, Eli Wallach has the most screentime.
In their introductory scenes (where they are identified on-screen as the “good”, “bad”, or “ugly”), Clint Eastwood, Lee Van Cleef, and Eli Wallach each shoot three people.
Filming had a short delay when Clint Eastwood refused to turn up for work until writer and director Sergio Leone agreed to his $250,000 fee, in addition to a new Ferrari.
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